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Tag: letter

Ambrose: FBI DirectorJames Comey – Camouflage of the Chameleon

Charles Ambrose is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, a former USAF JAG officer and served for 25  years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in D.C. and the Western District of Missouri. He is the author of the Jeff Trask crime dramas, writing under the name Marc Rainer. His newest novel in the series, A Winter of Wolves.

FBI Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

By Chuck Ambrose

The announcement Friday by FBI Director James Comey that he was re-opening the investigation into the Hillary Clinton email scandal has most of the nation wondering what led to this change of status, and the timing of his announcement. Before joining that guesswork, a review of what brought us to this point is appropriate.

In July, Comey took the highly unusual step of publicly castigating Clinton before announcing that he would recommend against any prosecution. His legal “analysis” of the proof against Clinton was also highly unusual.

First, there were the facts of the investigation as summarized by Comey himself. These facts included the intentional establishment of an unauthorized server in the Clinton residence, the repeated sending and receipt of highly classified matters, the former secretary’s repeated lying about her actions and the nature of the emails, and her attempts to destroy the evidence against her. Proof of intent is generally established by evaluating the actions of the suspect, including false statements and the destruction of evidence. Nevertheless, Comey initially decided that there was insufficient evidence in all of that to show any criminal intent.

After ignoring evidence which would have met the intent prong of the statute, Mr. Comey essentially wrote subsection (f) (the gross negligence section) out of the applicable statute. The Director’s explanation that he had worked all his life to “decriminalize negligence” and thereby would not recommend prosecution was nothing short of ridiculous. It should be first noted that Mr. Comey offered no such examples of his “life’s work,” and it is doubtful that there are any.

There has always been prosecution of criminal negligence, and with good reason. Negligent homicide by reckless driving is one common example that should come readily to mind. Intent to kill is not required. The negligent actions taken are so inherently reckless as to endanger human life, and are therefore included in virtually every state and federal criminal code as punishable offenses. It must also be noted that Mrs. Clinton’s unguarded emails may have similarly resulted in at least one death—that of an Iranian scientist who was executed by Iran as a spy after his name surfaced in one of the emails on Clinton’s unprotected private server.

Chuck Ambrose

Chuck Ambrose

Comey’s recommendation against indictment in the Clinton case was—to some extent—a delusion of grandeur, since it presumed that any contrary  recommendation would have been given serious consideration by the Obama/Holder/Lynch Department of “Justice.” The FBI cannot convene a grand jury or seek an indictment without the approval of DOJ, and in cases involving high-level officials such as the former Secretary of State, such approval is generally reserved to the Attorney General herself or her designee. Given Ms. Lynch’s infamous tarmac tryst with the husband of the target of this investigation, indictment was never really in the cards.

In fact, even the empanelment of a grand jury in this matter was never in the cards. Ever since the Supreme Court’s decision in the Nixon Watergate case, it has been established that executive privilege cannot be successfully used as a shield against grand jury subpeonae which seek to uncover evidence of criminal wrongdoing. The act of convening a grand jury would therefore have had the effect of exposing even the President—now known to have used an alias to communicate with Clinton on her illegal private server—to the investigation.

Read more »

FBI, Secret Service Investigate Threatening Letter Sent to Donald Trump’s Sister

Donald Trump

Donald Trump

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI and Secret Service are investigating a threatening letter received by the Donald Trump’s sister, who is a federal appeal court judge in Philadelphia.

Maryanne Trump Barry, 78, received the letter on Friday, Metro reports. 

Authorities also are investigating a letter sent to Trump’s son, Eric Trump, who found a granular substance in the delivery.

The letter to Trump’s sister did not contain water powder but demanded that Trump drop out of the presidential race.

Homeland Security Secretary Responds to President Obama’s Immigration Plan in Letter

Jeh Johnson

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson issued a letter last week after President Obama unveiled a new immigration plan.

Tonight, President Obama will announce a series of executive actions to begin to fix our immigration system. The President views these actions as a first step toward the reform of the system, and continues to count on Congress for the more comprehensive reform that only changes in law can provide.

I support and recommended to the President each of the reforms to the immigration system that he will announce today. These recommendations were in turn the result of candid and extended consultations between me and the leadership of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), as well as outside stakeholders. Along the way, I listened to members of the workforce who implement and enforce the law to hear their views. In my own view, any significant change in policy requires the insight of those who administer the system. I believe we have done that here.

The executive actions the President will announce will reform and improve the system in a number of respects. These executive actions are well within our legal authority to direct and implement.

Many of the actions the President will announce tonight must be implemented by you. Today I visited USCIS to explain those actions to the workforce there, and to others by video teleconference. Tomorrow, the leadership of CBP, ICE and USCIS and I will travel to McAllen Station, Texas, to review the executive actions with the workforce in South Texas. In the coming days, I or other leaders of this Department will also brief many of you around the country about the reforms, in person, by video teleconference or otherwise.

Thank you in advance for your attention to these new policies, and thank you again for all the good work you do for the American people.

Sincerely,

Jeh Charles Johnson
Secretary of Homeland Security

Letter by Jail Inmate Prompted Wide-Sweeping Investigation of L.A. County Sheriff’s Deputies

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

What turned into the largest mass arrests of L.A. County sheriff’s officials in decades began with a single letter from a jail inmate, the Los Angeles Times reports.

FBI Agent Leah Marx testified that the probe began in June 2010 when a county jail inmate detailed a pattern of violence by deputies.

The letter prompted a joint civil rights and public corruption investigation after more inmates began describing excessive force, Marx said on the stand for one of the deputy’s trials.

One inmate told the FBI that deputies were offering contraband for a bribe.

Letter to President Obama Tests Positive for Ricin

Pres. Obama at press conference/white house file photo

 
Aaron C. Davis and Sari Horwitz
Washington Post

WASHINGTON — A letter addressed to President Obama containing a substance that initially tested positive for the toxin ricin was intercepted Tuesday by authorities at a remote White House mail screening facility, according to the FBI.

The letter follows the discovery Tuesday of a ricin-laced letter sent to Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and came as authorities were investigating suspicious packages in and near the offices of members of Congress.

Edwin Donovan, deputy assistant director of the U.S. Secret Service, did not identify the substance. However, he said the Secret Service is working closely with the U.S. Capitol Police and the FBI.

To read more click here.

Feds: Mobster Conducts Business from Prison

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Accused mobster Joseph “Mousie” Massimino is suspected of conducting Mafia business from behind closed bars, the Philadelphia Daily News reports.

Among the evidence is a letter that Massimino sent to a friend in 2005 while locked up in New Jersey’s South Woods State Prison.

The letter advises a friend to “get in touch with Michael and tell him to tell his mother to tell her husband that he better get my f—in money.”

Federal prosecutors plan to argue their case at an upcoming mob-racketeering trial.

Massimino’s attorney, Joseph Santaguida, hopes to convince a judge to keep the letter from the jury.

Ex-FBI Informant and Right Wing Shock Jock Claims Life is in Danger in Prison

Hal Turner/msnbc photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Convicted right winger, New Jersey Internet shock jock Harold “Hal” Turner, who once worked as an FBI informant, claims his life is in danger now that he’s  housed in federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind., with notorious prisoners, the Jersey Journal reported.

“I probably won’t even see it coming,” Turner wrote in a letter to the The Jersey Journal. “They are facilitating my murder by putting me in the direct physical presence of the very terrorists I defended the nation from.”

A Bureau of Prisons spokesman told the Journal: “All inmates in the custody of the BOP are designated at facilities, housing units and management programs consistent with the inmate’s security needs.”

After jurors twice deadlocked, Turner was convicted at a third trial last December of threatening the lives of three U.S. Court of Appeals judges in Chicago. He was sentenced to 33 months in prison.

Turner, 48, was charged in June 2009 for writing Internet postings proclaiming “outrage” over the pr0-gun control, handgun decision  by U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook and Judges Richard Posner and William Bauer and wrote: “Let me be the first to say this plainly: These Judges deserve to be killed.”

His postings included photographs, phone numbers, work address, and room numbers of these judges. It also included a photo of the building they worked in and a map with its location, authorities said.

FBI in Dallas Looking into Stolen Jackie Kennedy Letter

Jacqueline Kennedy-1961/white house photo

Jacqueline Kennedy-1961/white house photo

Anything with a historic link to the Kennedys is bound to draw some public attention. But it’s not often that the FBI has had to step in. Here’s an interesting caper.

By SCOTT K. PARKS
The Dallas Morning News
DALLAS — An intimate moment between two of the world’s most famous widows is now the subject of an FBI investigation in Dallas.

The case centers around a poignant, handwritten note of condolence that Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis sent to Ethel Kennedy after Robert F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1968.

Investigators and Kennedy family members believe the note was probably stolen from Hickory Hill, the home of Robert and Ethel Kennedy in the Virginia suburbs outside Washington. But they don’t know when it disappeared from the McLean, Va., house. Collectors have been buying, selling and trading it for as much as $25,000 for more than a decade.

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